Rosie’s #Bookreview Team #RBRT THE ELIZABETH PAPERS by @JenettaJames #SundayBlogShare

Today’s team review is from Liz, she blogs here https://lizannelloyd.wordpress.com/

#RBRT Review Team

Liz has been reading The Elizabeth Papers by Jenetta James

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The Elizabeth Papers by Jenetta James

The Elizabeth Papers is both a gentle romance set in modern day London and Derbyshire and an intriguing mystery that takes us back in time to the early 19th century. The name Mr Darcy instantly indicates that the Elizabeth of the title is Elizabeth Bennett of Pride and Prejudice, but don’t dismiss this novel as a parody or bandwagon follow up. The plot is original and the modern characters, private detective, Charlie Haywood and talented young artist Evie Pemberton, are distinctive and well developed. Their relationship has parallels with that of Elizabeth and Darcy but their adventure leads them into different avenues.

It took me a while to feel at home with the characters of Elizabeth and Darcy, but then time has passed and they have been married for several years, so of course their relationship would have changed somewhat. The issues raised in Pride and Prejudice still cause problems but with a very different outcome. Although you don’t need to have intimate knowledge of that book, it certainly enhances your enjoyment of this novel if you do.

Book Description

“It is settled between us already, that we are to be the happiest couple in the world,” said Elizabeth Bennet at the conclusion of “Pride & Prejudice”—but was it true? 
Charlie Haywood is a London-based private investigator who has made his own fortune—on his own terms. Charming, cynical, and promiscuous, he never expected to be attracted to Evie Pemberton, an independent-minded artist living with the aftermath of tragedy. But when he is hired to investigate her claims to a one hundred and fifty year old trust belonging to the eminent Darcy family, he is captivated. 
Together they become entwined in a Regency tale of love, loss, and mystery tracing back to the grand estate of Pemberley, home to Evie’s nineteenth century ancestors, Fitzwilliam and Elizabeth Darcy. As if travelling back in time, a story unfolds within their story. All was not as it seemed in the private lives of Mr. and Mrs. Darcy, but how can they ever uncover the whole truth?
How could they know that in 1817 Elizabeth Darcy began a secret journal? What started as an account of a blissful life came to reflect a growing unease. Was the Darcy marriage perfect or was there betrayal and deception at its heart?
Can Evie and Charlie unearth the truth in the letters of Fitzwilliam Darcy or within the walls of present-day Pemberley? What are the elusive Elizabeth papers and why did Elizabeth herself want them destroyed? 
“The Elizabeth Papers” is a tale of romance and intrigue, spanning the Regency and modern eras, reminding us how the passions of the past may inspire those in the present.
 

Find a copy here from Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com

About the author

Jenetta James

Jenetta James is a mother, lawyer, writer, and taker-on of too much. She grew up in Cambridge and read history at Oxford University where she was a scholar and president of the Oxford University History Society. After graduating, she took to the law and now practises full-time as a barrister. Over the years, she has lived in France, Hungary, and Trinidad as well as her native England. Jenetta currently lives in London with her husband and children where she enjoys reading, laughing and playing with Lego. She is the author of Suddenly Mrs. Darcy which was published by Meryton Press in April 2015. The Elizabeth Papers is her second novel.

Twitter @JenettaJames

Rosie’s #Bookreview Team #RBRT THE ELIZABETH PAPERS by @JenettaJames #Austenesque #HistFic

Today’s team review is from Jenny, she blogs at http://jennyworstall.wordpress.com

#RBRT Review Team

Jenny has been reading The Elizabeth Papers by Jenetta James

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Reviewed by me as part of Rosie Amber’s Review Team.

The Elizabeth Papers is an intriguing romantic suspense novel that flashes seamlessly between the lives of Elizabeth Bennet and Mr Darcy once they are married, and Evie and Charlie in the present day.

I was drawn to it immediately as Elizabeth Bennet is my favourite Austen heroine. I don’t think it is possible to capture completely the chemistry between Darcy and Elizabeth nor Elizabeth’s brilliantly witty and teasing speech patterns unless your name is Jane Austen, but in my opinion this book stands up with the best of the sequels to Pride and Prejudice and for this reason I have given it five stars.

The attention to detail is faultless, both in the historical settings and in the present day world of art and detection, but the tale really becomes interesting when Evie and Charlie, the present day characters, make a visit to Pemberley and the two worlds collide…but no, I can’t spoil the mystery for you! I thoroughly recommend this book – but make sure you put some unbroken time aside because once you are hooked (in the very first chapter) you will have to read on and on until the mystery is solved.

Find a copy here from Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com also available free from Kindle Unlimited

Rosie’s #BookReview #Team #RBRT THE ELIZABETH PAPERS by @JenettaaJames #Austenesque #HistFic

Today’s team review is from Noelle, she blogs at http://saylingaway.wordpress.com

#RBRT Review Team

Noelle has been reading The Elizabeth Papers by Jenetta James

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The Elizabeth Papers is a book in the genre of the Eyre Hall Trilogy by Luccia Gray and Death Comes to Pemberley by PD James. But it does more than just extend from the end of a classic Regency novel – it combines with modern story line in a perfect blend.

At the end of Pride and Prejudice, Elizabeth Bennet and Fitzwilliam Darcy are blissfully married. At the beginning of The Elizabeth Papers, Darcy writes to his solicitor of his wishes to establish a trust for his female descendants, based on his observations of the uncertain futures of his wife’s four sisters. His marriage is chronicled in the diary of the pregnant Elizabeth, who begins by recounting the joys of a happy marriage and a family of two daughters. The author then jumps to 2014, when one of the female Darcy descendants, the greedy Cressida Carson, hires an investigator, Charles Haywood, to determine if some of the Darcy female descendants are falsely collecting from the trust. She wants him to find evidence that Victoria, fifth daughter of Elizabeth and Fitzwilliam, was not actually their daughter, based on a one hundred and fifty- year-old rumor. This will increase her share of the trust. One of Victoria’s descendants in Evie Pemberton, a young artist just coming into her own, and Charles misrepresents himself to her to begin his search.

The segue back to 1819 is smooth and the reader once again becomes entwined in the lives of the Darcy family: Wickham, the amoral husband of Lydia, Elizabeth’s sister, dies and Lizzie gives birth to yet another girl. This outcome weighs heavily on Lizzie’s mind since she knows her husband needs an heir.

All of the characters in Pride and Prejudice return in this book, fully realized, and the modern characters are drawn with insight and warmth. I would describe more, but I don’t want to spoil the story for potential readers.

Remarkably, the novel transitions smoothly from the intimacy of Lizzie’s experiences, written in the first person, to the third person narrative of Charles’ and Evie’s growing relationship and their ultimate trip to Pemberley Hall in their search for the evidence of Victoria’s birth. I loved tension at the end of each chapter, not wanting to change eras, as the story moved back and forth. The introduction of an old portrait of Lizzie surrounded by her five daughters, painted by an eminent portraitist of the time, is a jewel tying the two stories together. Kudos to Janetta James for making being able to use these disparate mechanisms work so well in writing this highly literary and entertaining novel.

Was there deception in the Darcy marriage? Can Evie and Charlie find Lizzie’s diaries in the walls of present-day Pemberley? Was Victoria a legitimate daughter? You have to read The Elizabeth Papers to find out, and I highly recommend you do so!

Find a copy here from Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com available free from Kindle Unlimited

Rosie’s Review Team #RBRT THE ELIZABETH PAPERS by @JenettaJames #Austenesque #SundayBlogShare

Today’s team review is from Jessie, she blogs here http://behindthewillows.com

#RBRT Review Team

Jessie has been reading The Elizabeth Papers by Jenetta James

“Finis.”

I read the last line, sighed happily and mentally hugged the digital book to my heart (It’s a true downfall of e-readers, they just don’t snuggle like paper does).

This novel flipped between excerpts from Mrs. Darcy’s diary (yes, that Pride and Prejudice Mrs. Darcy) and the 2014 hunt for the lost diary. On the surface that sounds like it could be, well, boring.

It wasn’t.

The chapters switched between time frames in a way that I was never lost in one time yearning for another. I loved the romance, (of the happy sighing kind) and the hard to put down suspense of it all (I know, lost document suspense, believe it!). My only regret is that e-readers just don’t accept hugs like paperbacks do.

Would I recommend it? I have already told everyone who’s been willing to sit and listen that they should read this and you should too! If you’ve ever shown even a passing interest in Pride and Prejudice, historical fiction, sweet romance, contemporary drama or detective stories, try this book! I absolutely loved it and have moved the authors other book to the top of my “to be read” list!

I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I discovered this book because I’m a proud member of Rosie’s Book Review Team!

Find a copy here from Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com available free from Kindle Unlimited

Rosie’s Avid Readers #RBRT Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen #ClassicBooks #Bookreview

Rosie's Avid Readers

Rosie’s Avid readers are people who like reading and have a book to tell us about, they are the voice of a friend who says ” I just read this book….”

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Avid Reader’s Thoughts

‘Jane Austen’s ‘Sense and Sensibility’ is a novel of contrasts and opposites, a concept established even in the title: in the Georgian era, to have ‘sense’ was to be logical and rational, and to think with your head rather than your heart, whereas to have ‘sensibility’ was to be very emotional and passionate, without self-restraint. These two ideas are symbolised by the novel’s main characters, Elinor and Marianne Dashwood; these sisters embark on a journey for love, and these two love stories are explored throughout the novel. Elinor, the character of ‘sense’, falls in love with the quiet, educated Edward Ferrars, who ends up becoming engaged to her ‘arch enemy’ Lucy Steele, but an exciting plot twist means that this marriage never takes place. Marianne, however, falls for the charming, mysterious but unreliable Willoughby, whilst she herself is adored by the older, more mature Colonel Brandon, and whilst it seems that this adoration is ignored initially, Colonel Brandon’s dedication is rewarded eventually. In the end, Elinor’s sense seems to be rewarded by Austen in her choice of husband, whilst Marianne’s reckless sensibility is almost punished with hers.

Whilst on first glance this seems to be a tale of first love and heartbreak, more themes are explored within the book, such as social class and family duty, as well as gender relations and the conflict between idealism, symbolised by Marianne, and realism, being Elinor. It is this complicated set of themes and messages explored by Austen that makes ‘Sense and Sensibility’ so unexpectedly engaging and even exciting, not something that comes to mind when you think of a Georgian novel! Another aspect of Austen’s novel that makes it so enjoyable to read is her satirical narrative style: Austen uses a technique known as free indirect discourse throughout the novel, which is when the perspective or opinion of a certain character is filtered into the third person narrative without the use of speech or the adoption of first person narration. This technique is used by Austen to mock and satirise some of the novel’s characters, such as the materialistic, self-centred Fanny Dashwood and the equally egotistic Robert Ferrars, unlikely brother of the kind, thoughtful Edward: this is yet another contrasting relationship set up in the novel. The satirical tone injected by Austen in parts of the novel gives the book a more light-hearted and humorous edge, to run alongside the more serious, mysterious and emotional narrative. One criticism I have of the novel, however, is that it can feel very slow at times: in some chapters there is drama, dialogue and passion, whilst in many others there are simply descriptions of characters and settings, where very little action unfolds, and whilst the betrayal and mystery of certain characters (I’m looking at you, Willoughby!) keeps the novel engaging and exciting, there are certainly lulls in the plot which I had to force myself to keep reading through.

Romanticism is another concept explored, and criticised, by Austen, as the excessive emotion and adoration of nature encouraged by this cultural movement is symbolised by Marianne Dashwood, who ends up falling severely ill as a result of conforming to it; Marianne’s illness is one of the many plot twists used by Austen in the novel to keep the reader engaged. Overall, this novel isn’t one of my favourites for no reason: Austen’s witty and satirical narrative style as she follows the heart-breaking, heart-warming love stories of the almost juxtaposing, but equally loveable (in my opinion at least) Dashwood sisters, whilst she also explores themes such as family conflict, materialism and a social obsession with wealth and reputation, is what makes it such a literary classic.’

Book Description

‘The more I know of the world, the more am I convinced that I shall never see a man whom I can really love. I require so much!’

Marianne Dashwood wears her heart on her sleeve, and when she falls in love with the dashing but unsuitable John Willoughby she ignores her sister Elinor’s warning that her impulsive behaviour leaves her open to gossip and innuendo. Meanwhile Elinor, always sensitive to social convention, is struggling to conceal her own romantic disappointment, even from those closest to her. Through their parallel experience of love—and its threatened loss—the sisters learn that sense must mix with sensibility if they are to find personal happiness in a society where status and money govern the rules of love.

Find a copy here from Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com

We welcome recommendations especially from non-authors for this feature, and would love to hear from anyone who would like to leave a comment and follow the blog.

 

Guest Author kit Bakke

Today our guest is Kit Bakke, author of yesterday’s book “Dot to Dot”, here is a link to the post if you missed it. http://wp.me/p2Eu3u-4Lc

Kit Bakke

Let’s find out more about Kit and her writing.

1) Where is your home town?

Seattle, Washington

2) How long have you been writing?

I’ve been writing books for about fifteen years.

3) What was the key inspiring for this book?

DOT TO DOT started out very differently. At first Dot was an adult and her problems and challenges were quite unlike our Dot’s. That version was also written in the first person, not the third. So a lot changed. The part that stayed the same was the setting in England.

4) Before this edition of the book, you wrote it with 2 other main characters , who were they?

The adult Dot had a husband, whom she thought was being unfaithful but he actually wasn’t and they had two grown sons, one of whom needed a kidney transplant, and Dot had a best friend who was sometimes helpful and sometimes not. So you see it was a much more complicated story—in all honesty, it was more complicated than I could handle. I did a lot of interesting research on kidney transplants, though.

5) What research did you do to get the accuracy of the descriptions of Alton and Keswick particularly?

I spend as much time in England as I can. I love the countryside and I love London. I am a long-time Jane Austen fan, so have spent a couple of weeks in the Alton area, soaking up the atmosphere and visiting the sights. A few years ago, I walked the Coast-to-Coast footpath, so was introduced to the wonderful Lake District. Seeing all the Wordsworth and Coleridge-related places got me reading about them, and I realized that Dorothy Wordsworth was an important part of their lives, and, as usual, the woman doesn’t get the credit she deserves. So I tried to fix that. And as for Mary Wollstonecraft, how could a person not be drawn to her courage, her politics and her sad, sad death. And then to have her daughter grow up to run around with (and eventually marry) Shelley and write Frankenstein was such an incredible bonus.

Our heroine Dot finds a lot of resonance in Mary Shelley’s life, and in the Frankenstein story.

6) How did you find writing the English words and mannerisms?

Love it. I love finding the differences between English English and American English. I especially like the way the English use the word “keen” to mean “like” or “looking forward to.” And I love tea—I love the idea that tea solves problems.

7) Did Aunt Tab believe in life after death?

Good question. Sometimes she certainly seems to, like when she says “Thea, Thea, here you go, but you will never be gone,” or when she speaks directly to the ashes. But I guess I’ll leave the final answer up to the reader.

8) What was Nick’s surname?

I don’t think I had that figured out. What do you think? Probably something like Weston or Smithfield or Leigh or Scofield…( ooh a part of me wanted you to say “Shelley”, but it may have sounded too corny)

9) What year did you have in mind for the setting of the book?

Today.

10) What are you working on at the moment? Do you have an expected publication date for fans?

I’m working on a nonfiction book about the anti-Vietnam war protest movement in Seattle in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Some of my friends and I were very active in the anti-war demonstrations and such, and I want to tell that story to kids today. Don’t hold your breath, though; it’s probably at least a year or two away.

Dot to Dot

Find a copy here on Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com

Thank you Kit, and Good Luck with the next book.

Dot to Dot by Kit Bakke

Dot to DotDot to Dot by Kit Bakke

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Dot to Dot is a tale of discovery for 12 year old Dorothy Mary-Jane. Finding herself an orphan when a freak accident kills her Mum before her very eyes, Dot’s world falls apart. Everything becomes BT (Before Truck) or AT (After Truck) in Dot’s grieving life.

Aunt Tab comes to the rescue, and takes Dot on a trip to England in the hope of laying a few ghosts to rest and spreading Thea’s ashes in a few memorable places. She explains who Dot was named after and their trip follows 3 famous ladies. Dorothy Wordsworth, Mary Wollstonecraft and Jane Austen. They travel around London, Alton in Hampshire and Keswick in the Lake District.

If you believe in ghosts or not, Dot meets these inspiring ladies and follows her own path of discovery whilst remembering the words of her mother “Be daring, Be inventive, Be loyal”. By the end of her week in England Dot finds hope for the future, deciding not to run away but by remaining loyal to her family.

Find a copy here on Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com

View all my reviews on Goodreads